Stanford University

Geophysics Seminar: Dr. Leif Thomas

Thursday, Jan 27, 2022 12:00 PM
Zoom Meeting (see login details in description)
More Info:
Geophysics Seminar: Dr. Leif Thomas
General Public
Geophysics Department

Leif Thomas
Earth System Science, Stanford University
Title: "Enhanced radiation of wind-driven internal waves in ocean vortices and fronts"

Winds blowing over the ocean generate internal waves with frequencies close to the inertial frequency 𝑓 =2Ωsin(𝑙𝑎𝑡𝑖𝑡𝑢𝑑𝑒) , where Ω is the Earth’s angular velocity. These so-called near-inertial waves (NIWs) can transmit a large amount of wind energy downward and thus are thought to play an important role in sustaining the deep branch of the ocean circulation. When these NIWs are formed, however, they are ineffective at transporting energy because their wavelengths are large, being set by the wind's ∼1,000 km footprint on the ocean. In order for the waves to efficiently radiate energy downward, their wavelengths must shrink. Theory predicts that the interaction of these waves with strongly-sheared ocean currents, such as vortices and fronts,  can lead to a contraction in wavelength and enhanced vertical radiation of wave energy.  In this seminar I will give an overview of these theoretical findings and their implications, and describe recent observations from the Iceland Basin
that evidence such NIW-current interactions.

 Please join us here on Zoom for the Geophysics Winter Seminar Series 2022

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